|A-29 Super Tucano's of the Afghan Air Force (File Photo)|
by Chen Chuanren
The Embraer Super Tucano is the sole compliant bidder for a Philippines Air Force (PAF) requirement for a new close air support (CAS) aircraft. The PAF has prioritized CAS and air to ground munitions procurement as a result of the takeover by Muslim extremist insurgents of the city of Marawi on the southern island of Mindanao. An Embraer spokesperson said the company is committed to fulfilling the requirement.
The PAF is seeking six aircraft for CAS to complement, and eventually replace its aging fleet of OV-10 Bronco twin turboprops. The Broncos have recently flown missions over Marawi, dropping 500-pound Mk 82 bombs against the insurgents. The PAF has also deployed its Leonardo AW109 helicopters and KAI FA-50 Golden Eagle fighters to help ground forces retake the city. The last of 12 FA-50s was delivered to Clark airbase on May 31.
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